Chels Wears: Thrifted Michael Kors

Glasses: Rue21 | Amour Earrings: Urban Outfitters | Ring: Charlotte Russe
Shirt: H&M | Pants: Michael Kors | Vest: New York & Company
Shoes: Target

I think it's safe to say that Michael Kors is my favorite designer. I'm sure that he's a common name to come from most fashionistas of my time and anyone who has ever watched Project Runway. I love that his designs look luxe but can be very everyday kind of wear. I love that he makes clothes for the working woman and that he makes her look classy in and out of the office. So when I found these Michael Kors "walking pants" with the tags still on them in my size at a nearby Goodwill, I was over the moon with excitement. (In that same trip I found a brand new Vera Wang skirt, too. Jack. Pot.)

I'm certain I've already worn them too many times to count, they are just so comfy and chic and they are perfect for a job that has me moving around a lot. The high-waisted trend is slowly taking over my life and I will forever love neon and a well structured vest, so this one is an A+ in my book. Speaking of A+ these shoes are the ones I bought for my Masters graduation ceremony, because in the store they looked more green and I wanted green shoes for Point Park's colors but I'm okay with them clearly being blue in natural lighting. Also, A+ worthy, these pictures were taken outside of the Ellwood City Public Library, which I think is my favorite place in town. I'm a nerd, I know. Oh, and happy back to school to all my alma maters, Lincoln, Seton Hill and Point Park!


Guest Post: Isaac Crow of The Fool Speaks

Another guest post for you today - from one of the first people I met when I moved to downtown. Isaac and I started working together at the Public Theater at the same time which was encouraging because it's always nice to have someone around who knows just as little as you do in a new job. We quickly became friends, because of his ability to put-up with my dramatics and our shared love of food, shitty television, and a dry sense of humor. If you've been reading my blog for awhile, then I'm sure you've heard Isaac mentioned at least a few times. His blog, The Fool Speaks, is a mixture of everyday ramblings, potential stand-up material, and an interesting outlook on the world around him. 
You'll want to check it out if laughing is something you like to do. 

"Why Am I Here?" by Isaac Crow

When I tell strangers that I live in Pittsburgh I'm usually asked "why'd you move out there?". This is a difficult question for me to answer, at least if I don't want to come off as an asshole.

See I was born and raised in Moundsville, WV (that's in the northern panhandle if you don't know). I grew up on a small beef farm and I more or less had a good childhood. Parents were great, had good friends, all that stuff. But I was not meant to live on a farm. Frankly I was not meant to live in Moundsville.

Now I'm not bashing Moundsville, don't get me wrong. I know a lot of truly fantastic people there. But I knew after college that I was not going to live there my whole life, like my father has and many other people have. Living in Moundsville felt (to me) like arriving at a party after mostly everyone else had left. There is not much life there; a Walmart, some major chain restaurants, and a lot of bars. My mother tells me they might get an IHOP there soon. Which is great, but an IHOP is nothing to look forward to.

So when college was over (I went to WVU, if you're wondering. I'll talk about that on my own blog one day) I decided I would not stay in Moundsville past the summer. There were no future goals; the goal was simply to get out and decide what to do after that. My friend had a house in Pittsburgh and she graciously allowed me to move into a spare room, something I hope I'll be able to repay her for one day (I did pay rent, I was referring to repaying the act.).

After a few numb months of unemployment, I landed two part-time jobs, both in customer service. Roughly 3 months after getting these jobs, my car had a major malfunction and "died".

That was a major turning point for me, losing that car. I didn't know what to do; I'd had a car since my sophomore year of college. Well I did what I had to: I bought a bus pass. Most people would consider that moving downward, and I suppose it is. But for me it was liberating: a car was something I relied on in West Virginia. I needed it to go anywhere. But here in Pittsburgh I could travel just with my own feet and a pass. I felt oddly independent because of it, and I lost weight to boot.

So I had two jobs, lost my car, and was living in a city most WVU fans despise. So, friends of my grandparents want to know, why?

Well let's start with food. It's a petty thing to start with, but I love food and Pittsburgh has delivered on that front. When I work downtown we have a regular pizza place, Milano's, that we go to for slices during work. It's not the best pizza in the world, but the point is I have a regular pizza place and it's NOT Domino's. I can also find Chinese restaurants that aren't buffets! Just hit up a City Paper or something and see all the food options, they're never-ending. In Moundsville there are two "Mexican" restaurants and they're owned by the same people (and somehow one of them is worse than the other).

Now let's talk entertainment. Tomorrow I'm going to see a show down at Altar Bar in the strip district. Next week I may go to The Moth at the Rex Theater in the south side. When fall roles around and my job at PPT resumes I'll have a lot of good plays I'll be able to see. Parades seems to happen every other month and there's always a fun convention going on downtown (get it furries!). There's always something to see in Pittsburgh and while I'm not the biggest social butterfly, it's nice to at least have the option.

Also, Pittsburgh exposes me to a wider diversity. It would seem very ignorant to say "I moved to Pittsburgh because I wanted to see black people." but keep in mind if I did just want to see black people I would have a difficult time in Moundsville. I'm not going to pretend that Pittsburgh is free of racism and prejudices, but the fact that every day I see people of any race or religion is tad more exciting than the all-white cast of Moundsville.

My sexuality was also a factor in my moving, because being gay in a small town in West Virginia is something I am not brave enough to attempt. The other evening I was walking to my friend's apartment up the street to watch TV. I ended up walking behind a gay couple, about my age, that were holding hands as they walked. I followed them for a few blocks and we passed a few people. Nobody sneered or yelled or did anything to point out the fact it was an all-male couple. Again, not saying  Pittsburgh is some homophobic-free utopia, but the thought occurred to me "you wouldn't see this is Moundsville." And if you did, I shudder to think of how it would end.

Wow, reading all this back to myself it seems that when people ask me "why'd you move to Pittsburgh?" I should just say "Because I fucking hate Moundsville." Again please know that that's not the case. I had lots of fun times in Moundsville. On my moving day I actually cried because I knew I'd miss my family so much
Chelsea never asks me to do her Fashion Fridays. I got this gem at the Strip.
I realize the reasons I gave above could be applied to any big city (and who knows, in a few years I may be in a different big city). But there are other reasons I like Pittsburgh: I've made some really great friends here. I've learned some new words, "jagoff" being a personal favorite. At one point I lived within walking distance of a movie theater, which was just an awesome thing. Not to mention the city keeps me supplied with things to yak about, either by going to see things and reviewing them or simply inspiring me to talk.

So there it is: my long answer to a question most of you didn't ask. But the next time a friend of my Nana's from church asks me "Why'd you move to Pittsburgh?" I'll probably grin and say "It's just fun there."

Sorry if there was more swearing in that post than you're used to around here. 
Sometimes it just helps to make the point and I love Isaac too much to tell him to censor himself. 
Except I will make fun of him for that shirt, especially because the font it's in is Comic Sans. Yuck.
Anyway, hopefully you all enjoyed his story and will check out his blog as well! Happy Tuesday!


Knit the Bridge

Hey everyone! Sorry for being a horrible blogger the last couple weeks - I promise to get back to all your emails and things in the next couple days, so if you're waiting on my reply, hang on just a bit longer. Today, I'm bringing you guys some photos I took of Knit the Bridge about a week ago and just haven't got to sharing yet. It honestly is so awesome. Unless you think that a bunch of people in Pittsburgh making quilts and then putting them all over the Warhol Bridge is ordinary, then well, you can skip this post I guess.

To find out all the ins and outs of this project, you'll have to go to the Knit the Bridge website and read all they have to say about why they decided to do this. But if you're just looking for some pictures, you've come to the right place! Keep in mind that if you haven't seen the bride in person, there are some upcoming events that you can check out while seeing it all until September 6th, when they plan to take it all down. Don't worry though, those beautiful and colorful blankets will be washed and given to homeless people through out the 'burgh.

And some of my favorites...

Have a colorful Monday, everyone!


History Center & KDKA Hidden Treasures Event & Giveaway

Nearly 1,500 visitors will bring their most prized possessions to the Senator JohnHeinz History Center and meet with professional appraisers at the sixth annual Pittsburgh’s Hidden Treasures event with KDKA-TV on Sunday, Aug. 25, from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m and at the end of this post, you have a chance to win TWO tickets to the event!

Nearly 40 appraisers, including experts from Christie's and the Smithsonian, the world's largest fine arts auction house, will assess the historical significance of visitors’ items and provide a verbal assessment of potential monetary value.

KDKA-TV's Dave Crawley, Kimberly Gill, and Mary Robb Jackson will roam the History Center seeking the most interesting items for interviews. The most unique items will be featured as part of special 30 minute programs on KDKA-TV later this year, hosted by KDKA’s Ken Rice and History Center President and CEO Andy Masich.

Appraisers at the Pittsburgh’s Hidden Treasures event have expert knowledge on a variety of antique items, including books, china, Civil War military, coins, collectibles, furniture, glass, jewelry, musical instruments, paintings, photographs, quilts, silver, sports memorabilia, toys, and much more.

In addition to appraisals, professional conservators at the Pittsburgh’s Hidden Treasures event will provide tips on how to preserve visitors’ items, including conservation expert Nora Lockshin from the Smithsonian Institution.

In conjunction with the History Center’s new Pennsylvania’s Civil War exhibition, several Civil War-themed re-enactors, including Clara Barton and Union Army soldiers from the 9th Pennsylvania regiment, will roam the museum throughout the day and interact with visitors.

The Pittsburgh’s Hidden Treasures event is free for History Center members and included with regular admission for non-members: $15 for adults, $13 for seniors (age 62+), $6 for students and children (age 6-17), and free for children (age 5 and under). 
But here's your chance to win TWO tickets instead of purchasing them!
This is a partnered post, but all opinions are my own.
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Guest Post: Lagelle

I know you lovelies expect to see some fashion here on Fridays so I asked my blogger friend, Tye of Lagelle, who is also from the Pittsburgh area to guest post today, as to not disappoint you all! I hope you enjoy meeting her today and her outfit - she always does such a great job with remixing great unique pieces and I really enjoy her style! Happy Friday!
Tye in her cute, layered look, getting ready for a Pittsburgh Autumn!
Hello Chels & the City readers!  It's lovely to meet you here, I'm Tye a local Stylist and blogger for Lagelle living in our great city of Pittsburgh! Thank you to Chelsea for allowing me to guest blog post for her while she's getting acclimated to her new job, I know we all wish her the best on her new position.  

I'm getting excited about Fall and being able to layer up with scarves and sweaters.  I scored the scarf I'm wearing in this post on Ebay, well it was a score because I wanted this scarf and it was sold out company wide at Madewell but it wasn't the best of prices. I pride myself on being frugal but now and then I'll treat myself to something I really want.

Chelsea asked me to answer two questions one being: Why I blog?  Initially I blogged to market my Lagelle accessories but it was becoming a chore until I decided I was going to have fun and be consistent no matter what.  I've learned that having a great blog takes a lot of work and consistency.  I continue to give my best and grow as I go along.

Photos provided by Tye.
The other question is: What is my favorite thing about Pittsburgh?  Well everyone that knows me knows that I'm obsessed with vintage and what better place to pick for some vintage goodness than our fabulous thrift stores.  Pittsburgh has the best thrifting hands down.  I love finding vintage gems, it can be like looking for a needle in a haystack but when I do I'm overjoyed!  I need to write a book about my pickings & findings (seriously).  I've found some unbelievable treasures throughout the years and for a fraction of the retail price. Often items are not even used, that's awesome!

It was great chatting with all of you today. You can checkout my personal style blog and connect with me here. Bye for now! - Thank you, Tye, for guest posting today and I hope all of you have a great, relaxing and, of course, fashionable, weekend!


Guest Post: DuffyDossier

A recent Pittsburgh blogging friend of mine, Alex of DuffyDossier is today's featured guest post as I still get settled into my new job - I'm excited to have her here today to give all of you the ins and outs of great vintage shopping in the 'burgh. Trust me, this girl knows her stuff! Hope you enjoy her post!
DuffyDossier is Pittsburgh born and raised.

The lovely Miss Alex of DuffyDossier - photo provided by Alex.
Here we go, gals. It’s time to talk about the nitty gritty of Pittsburgh Resale Shops. DuffyDossier is going to get down and dirty with all the epic details. I’ll give you an inside look into which Pittsburgh resale shops to frequent and which ones to stay far away, (and on the other side of the street) from. We’ll cover which shop owners know their way around resale, and which ones don’t. And of course, this post will talk about the tremendous Pittsburgh vintage selection.

Since taking on the responsibility of ‘Miss Vintage Pittsburgh’, I’ve had my fair share of resale/consignment/vintage shopping experiences here in the ‘Burgh. My first rendezvous at a resale shop began one year ago when I stumbled upon The Clothes Horse on Beverly Road.

Miss Judy sitting behind her glass counter full of jewels greeted me with a smile and personal introduction! Immediately, I admitted to her that I’d never been to a resale shop before, and that I was in need of some assistance.

Judy began by showing me around her shop and then she gave me the ins-and-outs of consignment. She explained how she gets her clothes, how often she gets them, her regular consignment junkies, how she prices items, their self life … etc.

Without that initial understanding of the ‘whats, who's, whys, and hows’ of consignment shopping I may never have been able to grasp what it takes to actually be a great resale shop. Since Judy’s consignment finishing school 101, I’ve been able to critique every resale shop in Pittsburgh on this side of the Mon River.

The Pittsburgh South Side

We all know and love the South Side of Pittsburgh, home to many boozy & woozy college kids after hours, but a GREAT location for consignment, and in particular, vintage shopping! 

Stores you NEED to try out in the South Side:
Luxx, Clothing and Hair Salon. First of all, GFs, this shop is both a hair saloon and vintage reseller … can you say #chictodeath? Second of all, the chic in charge knows how to put on a shoe display. Luxx is by far the best consignment shop for vintage shoes! The shoes in this shop are colorful, diverse, name-brand, and mod. The selection Luxx has going on right now is comparative to Steve Madden and Vince Camuot’s 2013 shoe lines.   

The Pittsburgh South Hills

Since I myself, am a PGH south hills resident, I know my way around consigning town. Here are a few shops that are a must-see!
TheSavvy Fox of Mt. Lebanon. And, boy …is she savvy! The shop recently moved its doors to a new location on Greentree road and also has another location in Peters Township. I was able to find some splendid work attire. Profesh & appropriate styles from Asos, various Macy’s brands, and Calvin Klien …just to name a few!
GladRaggs Boutique of Upper Saint Clair. This little shop used to be an old car garage, so it gets drafty in the winter! So, bring your duck-down coat and prepare because you’ll want to stop in no matter the weather. They boast a petite selection worth all your shivers!

Shady Side, Pittsburgh

Shady side has more than just the shops on Walnut Street! It’s one of my favorite little neighborhoods in Pittsburgh.
EonsFashion Antique. Down a ways, on Elmsworth Avenue, Eons Fashion antique is stacked with Vintage. (I’m not kidding, they have hat boxes piled so high they reach the ceiling) Eons appropriately dubs themselves, ‘fashion antique’ store for good reason. The entire store boasts clothing from all vintage eras, 90s and beyond. Their selection is stitched to perfection and made the way clothes used to be made  …with careful, nimble fingers.

And now, a little bit about me, Alex Duffy of DuffyDossier. Since agreeing to write for Chelsea’s ‘Chels and the City’ Pittsburgh blog, I had to start asking myself the hard-hitting questions, why do I blog? And, what is my favorite thing about Pittsburgh?

Why do I blog? Hmm… that’s a question with many answers! Since I know you don’t have all day, I will sum it up in a few words… I blog because I am creative. It took me 23 years to realize the depth of my creativity and all of my friends telling me I possessed style. So, I got to thinking, ‘Alex, what can you do that encompasses both your creativity and your style?’ The answer: blog, blog and more blogging! …blogging is always the answer.

What is my favorite thing about Pittsburgh? Pittsburgh people. I travel a lot in my free time. Hoping around from place to place, you begin to realize how valuable a genuine smile and a happy ‘hello!’ from strangers. The people Pittsburgh has are what makes Pittsburgh a happy home for me and my family.

Be sure to check out Alex of DuffyDossier on Pinterest, Twitter & Instagram as well!


Guest Post: D&T in the 'burgh

As I start my first week into the "career world" I'd like to introduce you all to some of my favorite Pittsburgh bloggers. First up is DeAnna and Tony of D&T: in the 'burgh. They happen to be the sister-in-law and brother of one of my Seton Hill favorites (Hi, Tina!) and when they started blogging, I instantly started to follow along. I love that they put so much detail into their writing, that it makes you feel like you were at some of these restaurants with them. I also love the variety of places they review, but all showcasing great Pittsburgh cuisine. First, is a little bit to get to know them and then you can continue reading to their review of The Porch at Schenley. Enjoy!
Why do we blog? The original thing my wife and I wanted to do was to, I guess “catalog” our favorite meals and restaurants we have enjoyed in the area. Then we had friends and family constantly asking us about our favorite restaurants and bars, so we decided to create a blog for them to follow along and see where we go. Now as we move forward we are trying to find new and creative ways to show people where to eat and drink in the ‘Burgh. On occasion we will also do a local activity that doesn’t revolve around dining, just to change things up.
What is our favorite thing about Pittsburgh? We would have to say it’s the love and loyalty that Pittsburgher’s have for the city. People love this city, they care about this city and they support others who want to make Pittsburgh better. They support locally owned businesses whenever they can. When they aren’t in Pittsburgh they are usually talking about how great they think it is here. Few cities have a population that is so passionate about their hometown. You may take a person out of Pittsburgh, but you can’t take Pittsburgh out of the person.
The Porch at Schenley - all photos provided by D&T.
Review of The Porch: On a sunny summer day in Pittsburgh the list of places to go are endless. We opted for a lunch date in Oakland at one of our favorite restaurants, The Porch @ Schenley. The Porch hasn’t been around long; a couple of years, but it is already on the short list of restaurants we recommend to people who are looking for a new and exciting place. Most people are unaware of the fact that The Porch is owned by the Eat ‘n Park Hospitality Group (along with Six Penn Kitchen downtown). The location of The Porch is ideal, right in the center of Oakland; you can walk to the Cathedral of Learning, Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hall & Museum, Carnegie Museums of Art & Natural History, University of Pittsburgh, Schenley Park and Phipps Conservatory. You can spend a whole day in this area and only see half of what is has to offer.
The building is gorgeous, its “green roof” is both beautiful and functional; growing many different fruit, herbs and vegetables right up above you. The kitchen is open with a beautiful pizza oven front and center. The walls are mostly windows allowing you to people watch or just stare out at the amazing surroundings.
The restaurant is wide open and lively; but not so loud you can’t get some studying done if you happen to be a student. You walk in, grab a menu, and then you step up to the counter and place your order. After ordering you take your numbered sign and grab a table. The service was good but not great, being that you ordered already the server just brings out the food once it is ready. They tend not to check in too frequently, which didn’t bother us at all. Some people who have negatively reviewed this place were unaware of how ordering worked and apparently also like their server to be at their constant beckon call (quick FYI, we are not fans of urbanspoon or yelp, its just people complaining over tiny little things, most of whom have no idea what they are saying). We don’t think Porch has to change a thing, they system is working great. Now to the best part, the FOOD! Everything here is made in house, the bread, the sauces, desserts, veggies, hell they even have honey bees on the roof and are producing their own honey. You can tell this when you bite into the food, its fresh, flavorful and handled with care.


Ending the Summer with Fun in Pittsburgh

Original photo from Knit the Bridge.
So the true purpose of this blog is to show that a lot is going on in Pittsburgh and that there really is something for everyone to enjoy. And this month of August is no exception. Here are so upcoming, and currently happening events that are going on that I am really looking forward to and hope that you get a chance to participate!

Style Week Pittsburgh - Now until Sunday, August 11th | Making it's official debut this week is Style Week Pittsburgh! With fashion-focused events everyday this weekend, you will not be disappointed as a fashion lover in the 'burgh. For all the information check out their calendar and visit Style & Steel for tickets to any of the fabulous events!

The Lt. Dan Band Benefit Concert for Cpl. Doug Vitale - Friday, August 9th | If you're local to the Pittsburgh region, I'm sure you've been hearing about Peters Township's own, Cpl. Doug Vitale, on the news recently. And all about his journey to Afghanistan, which led him to step on an IED, causing him to lose both legs below the knee and have a stroke in both sides of his brain. In the past week, we've heard about him meeting the Steelers and Pirates team members and on Friday, the Lt. Dan Band (yes Lt. Dan from Forrest Gump) with perform in his honor at Stage AE to benefit "Smart Home."

Pittsburgh Restaurant Week - Monday, August 12th until Sunday, August 18th | Can yinz spell YUM? Pittsburgh Restaurant Week begins on Monday for it's biannual "highlighting of fine dining, fresh harvests, outdoor seating and special diets." While the kickoff party is tonight (Thursday, August 8th) you can still enjoy other special events throughout the week as well as select from the the list of participating restaurants to enjoy great dining deals throughout the week! Bon Appetit!

Knit the Bridge - Monday, August 12th until Friday, September 6th | A grassroots, community-led art installation is currently in the works, thanks to multiple community groups and organizations to literally, knit the Andy Warhol Bridge. As you're reading this, people all over the city are creating fiber arts to later be set appropriately on the bridge to celebrate Pittsburgh as a strong city of bridges and steel, with a thriving arts scene. If nothing else, this will make get photo opportunities, but I'm pretty sure it will also blow people's minds.

Any specific events that you're looking forward to for the rest of the summer in Pittsburgh?


Chels Wears: Matchy-Matchy Love

Vintage Fork Ring: Festival | Belt: Urban Outfitters | Sunglasses: Brash | Phone Necklace: Wet Seal
Maxi Skirt: DIY | Vest: Old/Unknown | LOVE Tank: Wet Seal | Shoes: Charlotte Russe
I hate myself for being so match-matchy with this look, but the more I look at these pictures, the more I become okay with it. And this outfit matches my "blog theme" although that might annoy me after awhile. Oh well. These photos were taken at the electrical power plant in Ellwood City, the same plant that had some major issues not too long ago which left EC without electricity for about 14 hours. I'm sure if you follow my personal Twitter account, you heard me complain about that for about 13 of those hours.

I had originally thought about this outfit with a Marilyn Monroe graphic t-shirt I have and then when I was looking for it, I realized that it, along with about half of my wardrobe, is in storage from when I moved. Boo. But I did find this tank that I thought I gave away and am now glad I did not! I remember buying this with MJ, he likes it because the back has an awesome lace detail (sorry you cannot see it because I'm wearing a vest) and I like it because it says LOVE on the front. Awe. I also bought this telephone necklace in that same shopping trip, which MJ hates. Who says I can only wear clothing and accessories that my boyfriend actually likes? That is lame and I would probably have to give a lot of stuff away if that were the case! That is the one good thing about a "long distance relationship" - I wear what I want and don't have to hear him complain about it :) I'm sure he does the same too.


So You're Moving to Pittsburgh?

I've been thinking about this post for awhile, of things I wish I was told and things I found to be helpful when I first moved downtown and sharing all of that. If you are finding yourself getting ready to move or possibly just now getting there, here are some tips about how to adjust to city-life. And while I'm focusing on Pittsburgh, I'm sure some of these can be used for various other locations.

Know Where You're Moving
This is a "before" moving thought, but when you are looking at places, know what kind of neighborhoods they are in and what the area around them is like. While Pittsburghers are pretty similar at the core, the outside and how they like to live is widely different. If you're going to move to Homestead, you're probably not the same kind of person who would move to the Southside. Know the area and if you can actually see yourself there. If you cannot physically get the the neighborhood to see the place you'll be moving to, at the very least look up the address on Google maps and get a street view. If you're someone who wants to go out at night to do things and still feel safe, make sure the area is a place where that is possible. If you have little kids, you might not want to be in a place with a nightlife scene. I'd highly advise you to spend the day and/or night exploring in the area you want to move to and see if you can really fit there if you can, before selecting a space you might be stuck with.

Figure Out Public Transit
Whether or not you're moving to Pittsburgh with or without a car, at some point you will probably use public transit, so figure it out before you have to. You don't want to be stuck one day because your car won't start and you're late for work because you don't know what bus can get you there. T and incline schedules are pretty easy to figure out but unless you have a PhD in graphing calculations or know the system well, a bus schedule will confuse the pants off of you. And while I feel like an advertiser for Google now that this is the second time I mentioned it, just use Google maps/directions for a bus schedule. Also, get a Connect Card, because cash machines in the city are on their way out and if you're not a regular public transit user, you're going to want one so you don't have to buy a pass.

Get A Bike
I highly suggest this if you are without a car, you have the space to store it, and if you are in one of the awkward parts of Pittsburgh where public transit is limited. You need to be able to get places and the bike culture of Pittsburgh is becoming much more accessible thanks to BikePGH. Just please be careful and follow the "ways of the road" because Pittsburgh drivers are still Pittsburgh drivers and you might be over the age of twelve, but you still need to wear a helmet and have a light, and preferably a bell on your bike so everyone else can see and hear you coming by them. Be considerate of pedestrians and drivers and they will be considerate of you.

Consider Investing In A Zipcar Account
I know I'm talking a lot about transportation here, but it's because it's super important and because getting a Zipcar account was probably the best decision I ever made after moving to the city. If you have a car, you can skip over this part, otherwise, hear me out. There will be days when you want to go to an event or see a friend outside of the city and there will be no other way to get there without driving yourself. And because it's smart to live in Pittsburgh without one that you own, because you'll save on gas, parking and insurance, you'll want something every now and then that is reliable and that you can pretty much customize to your lifestyle. They offer different kinds of accounts based on how much you'll use a car, they have different damage fee waivers if you're in an accident, and are very reasonably priced, and you do not pay for gas. There are only a few simple rules about being a Zipcar member and they have a VERY helpful customer service staff if you ever need to call them. I could not recommend this company enough and they are getting better and bigger in Pittsburgh. 

Take the time to get lost on a day where you have nothing else to do, whether it's by foot or on the bus. I very literally did this throughout my entire first week of moving downtown. Each day I walked around parts of downtown, going on a different route every time, just to see how to get around different areas and where certain things are located. Granted, during the first couple days I panicked a few times because I seriously thought I was lost for good, and an earthquake happened while I was out the one day, but by the end of the week, I had it all figured out. What alleys lead to major roads, where the shortcuts through buildings are and how to avoid rain/snow for a walk to campus based on who has the best coverage over their sidewalks. Trust me, when I was later on crutches because of ACL surgery, I was very thankful for my week of exploring because I was able to very safely get to and from school, my apartment, work and physical therapy, because I very much mapped out my territory and where the safest ways to go would be. 

Take Time To Find Your Favorites
This goes along with exploring too, but don't take Pittsburgh for granted. There is so much around to be explored. Take the time to really check out the restaurants, shops and bars around you until you declare one your favorite. And while I'm very guilty of just running across the street from my apartment to get Subway real quick on multiple occasions, it was certainly not my favorite sandwich place downtown. It took me a couple months to settle on my favorite places downtown to meet friends for drinks, get pizza or gyros, order Chinese and Thai, sit and sip coffee, or which shops I knew I could find exactly what I'd want for great accessories or greeting cards (because if you know me, I'm picky about my cards haha). But seriously, take your time with this one, because when your 'out of town' friends come to visit, you'll want to show them the best your area has to offer, not just another Panera. Though I do love Panera.

Enjoy It
Pittsburgh is a unique place to be and this is a great time to be there. So much is transforming, we're being recognized for sports and entertainment, health care and education, and this is certainly not the smokey city that it once was and is becoming more energy-efficient and "green" everyday. Enjoy your time living in the 'burgh!

Although products, services, and places were mentioned, all opinions are my own.


Fashion Forward Fridays Reader Submitted: Meet Evan!

Hello friends! For today's Fashion Forward Fridays is a reader who I think has loved this "segment" of my blog since it's first post. Which I appreciate, Evan! I met him in my first year of grad school when MJ and I were giving a presentation about student leadership at an annual conference in Pitt Greensburg. He was on point from the moment we met and I instantly loved him because he is very much like MJ. From their goals, their student background and their ability to to dress well. And while neither of them would agree that their style is "similar" because they both are very unique but come-on...every body loves a well dressed man, no matter what his style.

All photos provided by Evan.
How would you define your style?
My style is very unique. I never stood in the crowd to blend in; it was a must that I stood out like a sore thumb. I love bright colors and my style is to accent them with other medium tone colors. I consider myself to be a well-dress individual. Fashion labels do not define what my style is; it surely is an attribute to my style.

Where are some of your favorite places to shop?
Express, Macy's (various locations other than PA). H&M, Burlington Coat Factory, Marshall's, and Buckle.

Where did you get the pieces you're wearing in the photos?
I have not a clue. I buy too many clothes to keep track, but ironically I remember these particular clothing pieces. Pants and shirt are from Burlington Coat Factory, shoes are from a flea market in Delaware, my suit jacket is from Macy's my sunglasses are from Lenscrafters.

If someone asked you for fashion advice, what would you tell them?
This is funny, this was the same question I was asked in an interview at Macy's. Well it depends whether it is a male or female. I'll stick with a female. I would want to know what makes her feel comfortable and what is out of her comfort zone. You never want to "give advice" you suggest it because if it fails, the blame is on you. Figure out her style, and get measurements and a feels for her financial background. After all of that, I would go over some colors with her to see which matches her complexion well.

What is your favorite trend right now?
My favorite trend is mine. I do not follow what other individuals are doing! That has never been my style.

Pittsburgh was recently called the 3rd worst-dressed city by GQ, do you agree/disagree and why/why not?
I totally disagree. I would like to know what demographics the researched, what parts of Pittsburgh, etc. - Pittsburgh is a well diverse city and it fosters a lot of the arts. Many college students have their own form of fashion that many won't understand. People have to understand that fashion is not made to be understood that is why it is always trending. When I drive into Pittsburgh, I love seeing men and women in the professional attire heading to work. Of course, you have some who do not follow the "Professional Colors" and those are the individuals that I like taking pictures of. You can still be professional and wear bright and loud colors.

Anything else that you'd like to add...
A little about me - I am a graduate student at Edinboro University with a focus in Student Affairs. I am a very spontaneous and I believe that my clothes can speak on that behalf.

I don't know about you, but I totally agree that loud colors can be professional! 
So I'm glad others have that opinion too - what do you guys think? 
Hope you all have a fashionable weekend!


Do Work, Chels.

If you remember a couple days ago I mentioned that I had big news that I wanted to share with you, and if you are a friend of mine on Facebook then you already know this news, but I have been offered my first full-time, big girl, for serious, job.

I am the newest member of the Dress for Success Pittsburgh team and I don't think I could be happier. I am the Branch Manager for the Washington County branch of Dress for Success and am excited to get started, because this job will allow me to combine my educational background of Public Relations, with my love for non-profits and working with people, and my passion for styling all into one. And I am ready to rock Washington County.

If you do not know about Dress for Success, it is an international organization that promotes the economic independence of disadvantaged women by providing professional attire, a network of support, and the career development tools to help women thrive in work and in life. What I like most about this organization is that it is focused on women, and gives those women the tools to empower themselves. I truly believe that empowerment comes from a desire within yourself to make a difference in your life, and not that other people can empower you. And I think Dress for Success gives women the tools to empower themselves. I'm so thrilled to be a part of this organization.

I also am very blessed to have such an amazing support system through my job hunt journey and I promise each of you that I will pass on your words of encouragement to my future, job-seeking clients. The opinions expressed in this post and throughout my blog are not necessarily the reflection of my employer, but are solely my own.

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